School bags get weight limit in hunchback fear
India has denounced schools for making students carry heavy school bags and giving young children homework amid concerns over the impact on children's spines.
The government has issued weight guidelines for school bags depending on a child's age, citing studies that show how the load can affect spines.
One survey by the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India found 68pc of pre-teen children might suffer from mild pain, which can develop into chronic pain, and later into a hunchback.
It found more than 88pc of children aged seven to 13 carry more than 45pc of their body weight on their backs.
The state of Maharashtra, where Mumbai is located, mandates that the weight on the bag should not exceed 10pc of the child's body weight.
Many schools there have started using white boards and projectors to ensure text books are not required to be carried.
But in rural areas, children have to walk great distances, weighed down by school bags. Children have been known to ford rivers, some with books on their heads, to get to school. (© Daily Telegraph, London)